Poetry of Nature Retreat: May 2024

Saturday, May 18 and Sunday, May 19, 2024, Innisfree Retreat Center, East Bend, North Carolina

Join us for either or both days of this two-day nature-based writing retreat at Innisfree Retreat Center in North Carolina’s beautiful Yadkin Valley (an easy 90-minute drive from Charlotte). In addition to structured retreat activities, you’ll be able to enjoy walks on Innisfree’s two miles of trails through woods and pastureland, walk the labyrinth, visit nearby wineries, or just relax in the garden.

Each day is 10:00 am to 4:00 pm. Retreat fee for Charlotte Lit members is $150 for either day, $275 for both days. Non-members: $200 for either day, $350 for both days. What’s included: all class materials, lunch and snacks throughout the day.

Day One: The Natural & Spiritual

Saturday, May 18, 2024. Join poets Jessica Jacobs and Rose McLarney for craft lessons focused on natural and spiritual explorations in poetry. We’ll discuss how to delve into texts such as the Torah and New Testament that may seem not only sacred but inaccessible and inviolate. And we’ll consider how to write about animals and other elements of the more-than-human world, trying to move beyond anthropomorphism by accepting the responsibilities and powers of our human perspectives. Activities will include discussion of exemplary poems and generative exercises. Expect to leave with the drafts of potential new poems and/or short prose.

Register for Saturday OR Register for Both Days

Rose McLarney
Kathie Collins

Day Two: Landscape as Self 

Sunday, May 19, 2024. Join landscape designer & spiritual director CJ Lawing and poet & Charlotte Lit co-founder/creative director Kathie Collins for a day spent awakening our creative imaginations through deep reflection on the landscapes that stir and speak to our hearts. Through guided meditation, conversation, writing prompts, mindful wandering, and playful fashioning of found objects into symbols of Self, we’ll discover how our inner and outer worlds mirror one another and practice drawing creative inspiration from the relationship between the two.

Register for Sunday OR Register for Both Days

Lodging Options

East Bend is approximately 90 minutes from Charlotte, NC, 25 minutes from Winston-Salem, NC, and 20 minutes from King, NC. In addition to the most common chain hotels in all three cities, you might check out a local bed & breakfast, including:

A Mighty Oak Bed & Breakfast, Pinnacle, NC (near Pilot Mountain): https://amightyoakbedandbreakfast.com/

The Shaffner or Summit Street Inn, Winston-Salem, NC: https://historicinnsws.com/summit-street-inns/